Tackling busy April of chores ahead of spring gobbler season
Easter weekend finally brought the weather I was looking for, and I sprang into
action on the chore list. After all, turkey season was only a month away
(shorter for the youth weekend) and there’s plenty to do if I want to spend my
weekend mornings in May chasing gobblers.
The truth is, I’m going to hunt turkeys anyway because I’m addicted to it, but
my mind will certainly be more at ease if the spring yard work, gardens and fire-wood pile are at least somewhat under control.
Every summer you hear deer hunters saying they have to do this or do that in
order to be able to have time to go deer hunting when autumn arrives. I fall
into that category, too, but it is equally paramount for the spring turkey hunter
(and trout fisherman).
It goes beyond saying that preparation for the hunt is on the pre-season
checklist. Scouting, patterning shotguns and calling practice are all part of
the game, and the fun. However, if you’re a homeowner, you’ve likely got quite a
to-do list, either of your own or your spouse’s, to attend to.
I’m lucky to have a very rural lifestyle. I live on a considerable chunk of
property that has been in the family for well over a century. I have a long
driveway, a few gardens, a woodstove to feed in the winter and even a few
experimental food plots, all of which need to be attended to between the time
the snow finally melts and May 1 – the turkey opener.
With the snow finally gone, I hit the ground running on my wood pile and, if luck has it, that project will be done by the time you read this. I’ve also been out
grading my long driveway, which suffers greatly from snowplowing and spring
run-off. Then there’s getting all the machinery running, like the lawnmower and
weed trimmer, which soon enough will be put to use.
It’s not unusual to have some of these chores carry on well into May. In fact,
my great-grandfather who vigorously farmed this same property often waited until
June to plant his gardens, and I often do the same. But there’s still plenty of
prep work to be done and I usually target Memorial Day weekend for that. If my
turkey tags aren’t filled by then, those can be some long days, especially if
the weather is hot.
There’s also the fun part. Although I turkey hunt on some public land, I also have
access to private property. But in some cases, that is an ever-changing
situation, which I know many turkey hunters out there deal with. So I’ve been
on the road, on the phone and on the computer lining up a few new hunting spots
that I’ll be scouting very soon. I also like to spend some time at the range
making sure my shotgun pattern is satisfactory.
This all translates into April being a very busy month. Still, somehow I manage
to sneak in a trout fishing trip or two. But that’s another story, as turkeys
always take precedence and the season is just weeks away.
Are you ready?